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Discussion in 'Hip-Hop Central' started by Ixtlan, Oct 24, 2006.

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  1. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    Point taken... but Nas is versatile... he changed up his styles on "I Am" and "Street's Disciple"... maybe not as versatile as Jay, but he has more depth... which should weigh more to me.

    Versatility with no depth is pointless... just like innovation with no influence.


    Not an outright bite, but he was definitely influenced by Nas... and Biggie and Big L... (see my reply to Sparticus. ) Also, Jay will admit this himself, when Illmatic dropped, nobody was a bigger fan (Stan) of Nas than Jay.


    I will ACCEPT that he has two classics, but personally, I feel he has none... and I don't see The Black Album being a contender at all.
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  2. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    Pixtlan? Good one.
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  3. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    It's absolutely ridiculous that you're even referencing his OF days.

    EVERYONE evolved after the Das Efx-era of rhyme.

    You've always said that and I don't know why...
    Quiet as kept... It's been argued that RD was a better album than Illmatic.
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  4. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    He tried and failed. That was his attempt to finally become commercially viable.
    "Big Things" was an embarrassment. That style swallowed him whole.
    The only redeeming quality in "You Won't See Me Tonight" was Timbaland on the button-push and Aaliyah (who's prowess on Rap hooks was grossly underappreciated).

    In fact, that whole album might be the greatest proof that Nas isn't versatile.
    It gives you the greatest contrast between failed attempts at stepping further into the mainstream and staying in his lane.

    Case in point?
    "New York State of Mind, Pt. 2", "Money Is My Bitch", "Undying Love", "Nas Is Like"
    The shining moments on that album.

    I'd agree that he might be a bit more meat & potatoes than Jay, but he's an inferior songwriter and doesn't really give you much else. Nothing for the clubs... Rap heads shall not live by bread alone.

    I'm not sure why that means he was influenced by him.
    I'm a HUGE fan of Biggie's, but you wouldn't know it by listening to my music.

    Shame on you Kon. Jay's best album might be better than Nasir's.
    Put that in your pipe and smoke it.
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  5. Sparticus2

    Sparticus2 New Member

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    Actually, that is basically the exact definition of "flow" not lyricism. I mean, they are very interconnected, but what you should of said to be accurate is

    "if you can make a rhyme flow melodicly over a rhythm, than you have "flow" or a "good flow"

    You can definitely make rhymes flow melodically over a rhythm very well and still be a poor lyricist, nah'mean?
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  6. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    TBL wasn't influential?
    Tell that to nearly 150 remixes of that album (the remixes alone immortalized that project). This album spawned one of the most interactive movements in Rap history...Irrespective of "underground" and "mainstream" lines.

    Cookie cutter material where he addressed his critics and their constant picking at his borrowing Big's lines?

    Cookie cutter material where he eloquently outlined how the Rap game would fare the moment he walked away from it (which has been eerily accurate)?

    Sounds like pretty meaty stuff to me.
    No, it wasn't exactly save-the-world content, but certainly more than you're giving him credit for.

    Honestly, what in Rap is groundbreaking these days that doesn't blur the lines of Rap music altogether? You're being a bit unrealistic here Kon.

    The album was cohesive.
    "Encore" was completely uncharacteristic for Jay production-wise, but painted the perfect backdrop for the content. Perfect fit there...

    "Change Clothes"? So much for dumbing down his lyrics for singles.
    Let's get to the memorable moments:
    "December 4th", "What More Can I Say?", "99 Problems" "PSA (Interlude", "Lucifer", "Allure"...

    There might've only been 2 'naaah' songs on the entire album.
    Solid from top to bottom.

    I'd say there were probably more than a handful of classic songs on the album, the album spawned a never before seen movement in the genre that was all-inclusive (okay, I told a little White lie -- Roxanne Shante's "Roxanne, Roxanne" sparked the Roxanne Wars that saw over 40 different artist responses some 20 years earlier), the album has tons of replay value, an album that did 2.1 milly with no guest appearances (that's not something you see everyday).

    How about taking two beat submissions from unknown producer commodities for the album that was billed "as his last"? Even considering the fact that we now know it wasn't...That's a hell of a chance for an artist of his stature to take on a major release.

    Or how about the fact that the album found life, again, in another widely commercially successful album in "Collision Course" with Linkin Park?

    Or how about the 5, count them 5, artists who borrowed lines from Jay and sampled them into their own songs (okay 4.5, TI really borrowed that line from Big)?

    There's your argument Kon. You're welcome.
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  7. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    I explained this earlier in the thread.
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  8. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    Das Efx had a highly innovative flow and rhyme scheme... nobody else was using inners as much as they did when they came out.

    I think between '90 and '93, Grand Puba was the greatest lyricist in hip hop.



    Mainly because of the evidence... I've watched Jay evolve. I'm no new fan. Many people here only discovered RD a few years ago... I've been into Jay since he's been rippin' the underground scene in the early '90s. The introspection and complex delivery he displayed on RD is the result of the stakes being risen since Illmatic. You criminally underestimate the importance and impact of that album. It turned hip hop, more specifically, the NYC scene upside down. Rappers started paying attention to lyrics more again... well, up until about '98.

    There have been plenty of polls on this site between RD and Illmatic... and Illmatic usually wins out. I bet if you polled numerous critics, fans and other established rappers whose hip hop knowledge extend at least 15 years, they will tell you the same.
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  9. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    He proved himself commercially viable already with IWW, propelled by the diamond-selling vocals of L-Boogie on the lead single... so is 2 million copies sold anything to sneeze at?

    I Am was just him stretching out some more into that vain... I'm sorry you felt that he failed, but he still went platinum with that album... and his flows weren't bad. You're just being unfairly hard on Nas.

    I never once said or implied that Jay was wack, just that he's overratted... he underachieves... and he's not the GOAT. I'd put him in the top ten, though.

    Aha, now we're coming to the jux of your premise... one has to have club hits in order to be an important or great emcee. I see... that goes right along with the MC requirement of "move the crowd," right?

    Nas does get a minus for "club bangers," I'll give you that... but I don't think that diminishes his status one bit as a lyricist.

    And you call him an "inferior songwriter," but admit that he has better poetics and story-telling capability? How is that so? Are the only good songs the ones that get the booties shaking?


    Like I wrote before, look at the evidence... his recording history is at your disposal.
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  10. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    ha... I knew you were gonna mention that.

    Those remixes don't count. That was a calculated move on Jay's part to release an a capella version of his album. It was pretty interactive, though... and some of the remixes outshone the original... namely Danger Mouse, Kno and 9th Wonder's versions.

    I meant influential as in changing the way other rappers approach their craft. DJ's and producers have been remixing and "screwing" songs forever.


    Jay has always spoken directly to his audience.

    PR move... hence, his "return"... not exactly a Nostradamus moment.

    His production choices were still predictable... his content was still more of the same... 'I'm fly and here's why'

    Which is why my definition of classic is so strict... you let RM.com tell it and a "classic" drops every month.

    But for examples of groundbreaking hip hop that still remain within the form (hip hop has become elastic, haven't you heard?)... Louis Logic's Sin-A-Matic, Cee-Lo Green's Soul Machine, Outkast's Idlewild


    Horrible beat. Forgettable chorus. Overall bland and boring.


    I never said it wasn't a good album, just not a classic to me.

    Your "unknown producer" argument doesn't ring loud given these two premises:

    1) 'a hot beat is a hot beat'
    2) producers don't SELL Jay's albums... Jay Z does.

    He has enough star power to go platinum on an album full of beat boxes. It would be different if he was an unknown artist or a washed-up, forgotten artist trying to make a comeback, then a "name-brand" producer would be necessary. That hasn't been the case for Jay-Z since his meteoric rise in '98.


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  11. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    Indeed they did.

    I don't know about all that, but I did rock "Reel To Reel" 'til the tape popped.

    As have I.

    You completely gloss over Wu's efforts during that time.
    And Biggie's for that matter.

    Wait, now you place value in what RM members have to say?

    I'm not so sure.
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  12. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    I'm talking Jay, Diddy, Big and Snoop numbers.
    Crossover numbers. North of 3 milly.

    Remember by 1999 (when IWW was released Jay, Diddy, Big and Snoop had all done more than 4 million).

    No sir, I'm not. I like that album. It's incredibly warped. I rocked it ad nauseum, but he tried to change his style up and failed miserably. Go listen to "Big Things".

    Way to oversimplify my entire position...
    Jay brings a hell of a lot more than just club songs to the table.

    Simple. He's simply better at writing those kinds of songs (ie, one-dimensional).
    And not even in every case. The 'er' in better is relative. Jay paints pictures too. Just not as well as Nas has IN SOME CASES.
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  13. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    Ice Cube was probably the best or most engaging rapper during that time... but as for swagger, cleverness, and ill wordplay, Puba reigned supreme... and I'm going back to his Brand Nubian days, as well.

    No, I've addressed them before... Wu's biggest contributions or influence were more in musical production and on the business side of independent distribution and legacy, where individual rappers branch off from the group to do their own projects.

    Initially, Meth was regarded as the Clan's most charismatic and technical lyricist to the masses... and I did see some of his influence on Jay's schemes, especially on RD.

    Biggie didn't really blow up until '95 ("Big Poppa")... Wu blew up in '94 ("C.R.E.A.M."). Nas didn't excel commercially until his second album, but the inner core of the rap community paid attention to his debut.



    Not really... that was to counter what you said about RD being argued to be better than Illmatic. Other than from you, where has this taken place?

    Although I don't agree with the majority of this board's sensibilities toward hip hop... for the most part, their opinions matter since they are consumers.
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  14. Konscious

    Konscious Resident Sage

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    You're being picky.

    Platinum is crossover enough.

    Why not 10 million? 20 million?

    Everybody can't be MJ.

    I think you're confused... IWW dropped in '96.

    Jay was a "nobody" then... I mean, those singles he dropped caused a little ripple, but RD didn't even reach gold during its first YEAR (go look it up.) It finally hit platinum status in '02.

    Diddy wasn't a solo artist then.

    Big and Snoop were the only two you mentioned who were moving major figures in '96.


    I neither loved it nor hated it... I thought it was no worse that Big's approach on "Notorious Thugs," but that was lauded...yet Nas was hated?

    I know that, but your main variable has been "commercial viability" or club hits as an edge over Nas... everything else is about equal, with Nas exceeding him in some areas... ie., poetics, storty-telling


    What's wrong with having a niche? And having it locked?

    I'd rather be excellent at one thing... than mediocre in many things. Not to say that Jay is, but you're over-emphasizing that point.
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  15. Ixtlan

    Ixtlan emceeingain'tforyou...

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    Here you go playing possum again Kon.
    You can sell one million copies to Black folks alone.
    Once you've sold 3 or more that's an indication that little White kids in Nebraska are buying your record. That's crossover success.

    Mary J. Blige and Outkast consistently sold 1-2 million copies for years until breakout successes catapulted them into that elite mainstream stratosphere. Nas has never been there. He's only ever sold records to his core audience.

    Sorry, that was actually directed at his '99 effort, "I Am".

    I wouldn't argue the point. It sold something like a shade over 400,000 the year it was released (June of that year I think).

    You say that like Nas sold a bunch of records out of the gate though...
    "Illmatic" wasn't a big-seller either.

    And I'd argue that Nas wasn't faced with as saturated a region at the time his debut was released. By 1996, Wu had already begun cutting solo projects, Big was working on his sophomore album, Mobb Deep was working on their third album, Kim and Fox were working on their debuts, The Fugees & Diddy sold crazy records AND LL had just done 2 milly with "Mr. Smith"...

    He was when "I Am" dropped.

    I meant '99.

    Big killed his verse. Nas got killed by his.

    Everything is equal let you tell it.
    I don't think it is. I think Jay's a more complete artist all the way around.

    Nothing, but that's a cute way to say Nas is one-dimensional.

    Jay's excellent at quite a few aspects of this Rap thing.
    Nas does 1 thing well.
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  16. MistaChipz

    MistaChipz New Member

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    Jay-z is obviously a better songwriter....he has a far better flow as well.....

    imo ofcourse....

    that is all.....
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  17. thedream233

    thedream233 Thrillmatic

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    Nas is far from one dimensional

    -he's done club hits like hot boys remix and Virgo

    -he's done love songs like KISSING, Getting Married, No one else in the room

    -He has storytelling tracks like Blaze a 50, Undying Love, and I Gave You Power

    - He's Done songs about fuckin bitches: Remimber The Times (a lot better than Girls Girls Girls) and Big Girl

    ***Oh, and as for Nas' fast paced style, yeah Big Things sucked, but on Big Girl and Bravehearted, he killed the tracks.

    - he's done "Gangsta" tracks "New York State of Mind" Just about all of It Was Written

    -He's done tracks about his family: Dance, Poppa was a player, Me and You, Bridging the gap, Fetus

    - He's done inspirational tracks like Nothing Lasts forever and Black Zombie

    - Hes done NUMEROUS tracks about life in the projects- My Way, Purple, Memory Lane, Project Windows

    - he's done political tracks- Rule, My Country, Road to Zion, Revolutionary Warfare

    How the fuck is Nas one dimensional again?
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  18. THIEF

    THIEF New Member

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    nas shoulda stuck with the style he had on illmatic/it was written
    he tried his hands at other shit and looked retarded as fuck doin it. all those gay ass songs like hot boys remix and that gay ass song with ginuwine.. then tryna be gangsta n shit switchin up his style to accomodate to the faggot ass listeners instead of jus bein himself
    all things aside, nas is a better lyricist than jayz tho, only a piece of shit would even doubt that
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  19. The_K3

    The_K3 ^Secksi^

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    are u kidding me... stillmatic i put on the lwoer end of nas' cds... nas has alot of great albums... a few are classic.. stillmatic is hardly classic for me.. as for jay-z reasonable doubt is the only one id put near classic.. that dude is sooo commercial
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  20. THIEF

    THIEF New Member

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    agreed

    although blueprint was dope i wont front.. but hard knock life, blueprint 2.. fuckin garbage
    stillmatic sucks and god's son= not impressive
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